Reviews Book

The Doctors' Tale: Professionalism and Public Trust

BMJ 2003; 327 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.327.7418.814 (Published 02 October 2003) Cite this as: BMJ 2003;327:814
  1. Charles George, medical director
  1. British Heart Foundation

    Sir Donald Irvine was president of the General Medical Council between 1995 and 2002. The Doctors' Tale has been written “for anyone… who is interested in what may be seen as an important moment in the history of medicine in the UK.” Sir Donald aims to give the reader an insight into the medical profession, its culture, and what makes it tick. Consequently, he devotes the first few chapters to the origins of the “medical tribes,” the development of professional self regulation, and the introduction of the NHS.


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    Donald Irvine

    Radcliffe Medical Press, £21.95, pp 247 ISBN 1 85775 977 X

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    Born the son of a progressive, singlehanded general practitioner in Ashington, Northumberland, Sir Donald studied medicine at Durham, qualifying in 1958. After house jobs and vocational training, he joined his father in general practice before teaming up with colleagues in two other practices to form the Lintonville Medical Group—a multidisciplinary teaching practice. Later he became regional adviser in general practice, was a member of the Merrison Committee of Inquiry into the …

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